Mitch's Multi-Monitor, Over the Top Home Office

Mitch's Multi-Monitor, Over the Top Home Office

Range Govindan
Aug 4, 2011

It's not always easy to create a multi-monitor setup with 3 or more screens, but Mitch Haile's updated attic home office sees your three monitors and raises you two more. Not many people use 5 monitors all at once, but the overall look and feel of his home office accommodates for the wraparound display with some thoughtful planning (if not a little obsessive). Many of us would love to have a similar setup, but as Mitch mentions, this is an over-the-top version of a home office built both for function and as a hobby.

Mitch explains the method to his madness:
"...it's fun and probably qualifies as a hobby at this point. I've tried to create a space that is pleasant in which to work. I'm in here 60-80 hours a week during crunch time. It's way less depressing than long hours at an uncomfortable desk and phone books to boost the monitor height.

After many years of working at tables that were the wrong height, looking at small monitors, listening to loud computers, typing on cramped keyboards that hurt my shoulders, sitting in falling-apart chairs, I decided enough was enough.

Some people have over-the-top cars, I have an over-the-top office."

This outrageous arrangement of 5 monitors, one for every finger, ends up almost encircling the user with a whopping overall resolution of 11440 × 1600 pixels. This enormous screen real estate is attained with four 30" Apple Cinema Displays plus an additional 20" monitor, arranged in a semi-circle. Two monitors are plugged into the original ATI Radeon 5770. Only an extra ATI Radeon 5770 card is needed to drive the extra three monitors.

All of this available screen real estate does come with its own set of problems. Finding the mouse cursor can be problematic with 5 screens to span across, but by accessing a system setting in the mouse preferences (System Prefs -> Universal Access -> Mouse) he was able to adjust the cursor to an easy to find 96x96 pixel size.

Mitch uses a twofold desk system. The main desk is from Bush Furniture (Series C Collection), comprising of a credenza and a recess, allowing him to keep the monitors eye-level, while using the lower surface for his keyboard. His second desk is a Design Within Reach Dordoni Worktable.